Monday, 16 June 2014

Coolbeth wins Knoxville Half-Mile

With the intake restrictors* removed Harley's filled the top six at yesterday's Knoxville half-mile. Kenny Coolbeth, #2, won on the Zanotti bike we featured in Sideburn 11. This is his first National win with the team he joined in the winter, and his first since losing his ride with the official Harley team.

*For years, certain bikes have had to use intake restrictors that strangle the performance of the engine, in an effort to create a level playing field (don't ask us why). They crudely allow less fuel and air charge to transfer from the carbs to the combustion area. For 2014 they're no longer being forced on teams. A Kawasaki won the Springfield Mile. A Harley won the half-mile, but I think Harleys have won every half-mile for the last 200 years).
Sammy Halbert, #7, won the Dash for Cash and came third in the main
Jake Johnson, #5, who rode a Ducati in the Ramspur colours at Springfield, was on an XR750 in the same colours and came in second.
Brad Baker was sixth, 9secs off the lead in the 12.5-mile race. We don't know if this is still a hangover from his broken leg injury or points to the much-held belief that private teams can currently get more out of the XR750 that the factory can.
Mikey Martin on the Bonneville Performance Triumph, 11th in the main. A solid result for a team that is quick but suffers from minor reliability problems just when they don't want them. 

both Mikey, and Shayna below, are sporting the new Super Wheels designed by Dutch Brothers Jan-Willem
Shayna Texter, #25A, earned her national number by making the 18-rider main (out of 34 riders who tried to qualify). Her Latus Castrol Triumph had horrific handling issues at Springfield, but they tested between the two races and went some way to curing it, but she was still more than a lap down. Jeremy Higgins, #82, came back after missing a few races to come 13th on the Baer Kawasaki.
After completely dominating Springfield, Jake Johnson found himself down in 7th, the first of seven Kawasakis to make the main. There were also were also two Triumphs, one Suzuki and the eight XR750s.
Never happier than when he's holding a big cheque. Sammy Halbert.
1. Coolbeth. 2. Johnson. 3. Halbert.
That's how it stands in the combined championship standings too.

Next race is Lima Half-Mile on June 28.

All photos courtesy of AMA Pro Racing.

No comments: